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Diversity and Inclusion Print PDF

A Reflection on Racial Injustice and the Need for Action

June 19, 2020

Cullen and Dykman has engaged in an open dialogue with our entire firm to address the tragic death of George Floyd and others who came before him. The firm’s Executive Committee acknowledged the painful events that have been taking place around the country because they affect all of us, and especially our colleagues, family, clients and friends who are people of color and may be hurting at this difficult time.

At Cullen and Dykman, we voice our anger and sorrow at the senseless killing of George Floyd and others before and after him. Together, we decry these reprehensible actions. The protests taking place in Minneapolis, New York and beyond expose the great injustice and inequality that continues to exist in our country. At the same time, we are also struck by the examples of unity, empathy and solidarity as peaceful protesters and police stand side-by-side to demand change.

Recent events reaffirm the need to unequivocally reject hate and discrimination, and to take action to help those around us to feel respected and safe, no matter the color of our skin. Mere expression of sorrow and anger alone, however, is not enough. This is a time, now more than ever, to listen, to learn and to do better. 

We are taking this time to reflect on the regrettable history of suffering and injustice in the Black community, which should be important to all of us, and to address needed change.

This moment reminds us that we have a long way to go and should each walk toward the day when we are all treated equally under the law and in our day-to-day lives no matter race, creed, color, gender, or sexual orientation. Our country is an amazing and diverse place because we aspire to be a nation of liberty and justice for all. Not just some, not just the privileged or the powerful, but all. The struggle for equality is one that we all have a stake in—after all, equal rights are human rights.

The goal is a noble one that can only be achieved if we all work toward it and seek to make this aspiration a reality. In this regard, we are mindful that, as lawyers, we have tremendous power to effect change, as demonstrated just this week in the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County. In Bostock we saw that even in this moment, while there is protesting in the streets brought on by palpable injustice, this country can take a real step toward equality for all. A step that was made possible by the briefest of phrases within the Civil Rights Act of 1964, a law that arose out of a moment that mirrors the present one.

We each have the capability and obligation to move the needle on change that is overdue. This is a time for healing and for action.

At Cullen and Dykman, we’ve committed ourselves to change. We are actively exploring ways to use our resources to help address systemic racism and the lack of diversity in our own industry. We will continue to foster a culture based on inclusion and respect, where all employees feel valued, heard and recognized for what they bring to the table. We welcome those within the firm and from other organizations who share our commitment to reach out and join these efforts.

- Executive Committee & Diversity and Inclusion Committee

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